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    » 06/04/2010, 00.00

    CHINA – HONG KONG

    Li Peng, the “butcher of Tiananmen,” was “ready to die” to stop the student turmoil



    Bao Pu, son of Bao Tong, has the diaries of the man considered the architect of the massacre, former Prime Minister Li Peng. They included what he wrote in 1989 and were ready for publication in 2004, but the government censored them. A Chinese newspaper publishes a cartoon about the massacre for the first time.
    Hong Kong (AsiaNews) – Former Chinese Prime Minister Li Peng said he was prepared to die to prevent the 1989 student pro-democracy protests from getting out of hand; for him, the turmoil they caused was comparable to that of the Cultural Revolution, this according to his diaries. Dubbed the “butcher of tiananmen”, Peng was Deng Xiaoping’s strongman and headed the diehard conservative faction in the Communist Party during the crisis.

    His diaries are now in the hands of Bao Pu, who is an editor and son of Bao Tong, personal secretary and friend to the late Zhao Ziyang, Communist Party secretary who in 1989 tried to prevent the massacre.

    Titled The Critical Moment, and subtitled Li Peng Diaries, the book is slated for release on 22 June in Hong Kong. However, Li's book was reportedly ready for publication in early 2004 to coincide with the 15th anniversary of June 4. By writing it, Peng wanted to tell, “What I know of the truth about this turmoil to serve as the most important historical testimony.”

    Li Peng is considered the mastermind and architect of the massacre. According to the book, he backed violent repression in 1989 because the student movement had gotten out of hand, and could cause “a tragedy like the Cultural Revolution”.

    For the South China Morning Post, which obtained a copy of the text, the publishers are waiting a month in order to establish its authenticity.

    Li Peng, 81, is thought to be in bad health at present. In his diaries, he describes the debate within the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party from the start of the student demonstrations in April 1989, stressing how the decision to impose martial law and send in the army to clear Tiananmen Square was made by Deng Xiaoping.

    In their annual letter to the government and the world, the ‘Tiananmen Mothers’, the victims’ parents association, are still wondering why Li Peng has not been taken to task for the event, asking whether he is above the law or not.

    Something appears to be changing though. Despite Beijing’s strict censorship on the Tiananmen affair, the Southern Metropolitan Daily in Guangzhou published a cartoon showing a boy drawing a line of tanks on a blackboard with what looked like a soldier standing in front. This is a clear reference to the “man with the bag”, the unknown man who for a few minutes stood up to the tanks sent in by the government to squash the demonstrations.

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    See also

    06/06/2009 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Outpouring of donations at Hong Kong Vigil, they will fund an archive on Tiananmen
    An estimated 194 thousand euros is collected. A museum and web search could be part of the archive project. Some Chinese blogs succeed in defeating censors and broadcast images of the Hong Kong vigil.

    02/02/2009 HONG KONG – CHINA
    HK pro-democracy activists to invite exiled dissidents to commemorate Tiananmen Square crackdown
    Meetings, forums and seminars are planned to lead up to the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre. Beijing will probably refuse visas to “counterrevolutionaries” involved in the 1989 event.

    08/05/2007 HONG KONG – CHINA
    Legislative Council blocks motion condemning Tiananmen repression
    The president of the body, Rita Fan Hsu Lai-tai, blocked the motion that calls on the government to shed light on what happened during the massacre on 4 June 1989. Those pushing for the motion say the most important thing is that the pro-democracy movement is remembered.

    31/05/2016 18:51:00 HONG KONG – CHINA
    Hong Kong to remember 4 June 1989, “On this, there is no doubt”

    Every year, the former British colony remembers the victims of the Tiananmen Square massacre. Hopefully, the Student Federation “will give it a second thought”, and join the vigil, says PIME regional superior. Ding Zilin, founder and soul of the Tiananmen Mothers, will not issue an open letter to the government for the first time in 27 years. The Church continues its commitment to truth and justice.



    06/06/2016 16:28:00 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Card Zen: justice for the victims of June 4, vigils to keep the memory alive

    Before the gathering in Victoria Park, the retired bishop led a moment of prayer for those killed in Tiananmen Square. “The June 4 incident has not passed,” he said. “History has to be passed onto the younger generations. Until today, many people in mainland China still suffer from suppression, forced disappearance or ‘forced suicide’.” Pictures from the vigil.





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